Thursday, December 28, 2006

Dempsey Watch, Day 46. WWDG?

Wisdom teeth extracted, affianced and, apparently (against my sage advice), going to Pissy Olde England.

But which team? I mean, club? Where Will Dempsey Go? And will Gooch go with? THAT would be cool.

Tune in after January 1st, same Bat time, same Bat channel.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

It's Official

The Christmas Shoes is the worst Christmas song ever.

Popwatch agrees, and got a Sunday School lesson for their trouble. Scott-o-rama knew it last year and knew why: because it's so manipulative. It came on while I was shopping for cowboy boots and I could NOT escape. I want to run screaming fa!la!la!la!la! from the store with my fingers in my ears, but I am on a mission. A mission from hell because as usual I have put off the shopping thing until the last possible moment, because deep down in my heart I believe Santa's little elves are going to do it for me. Damn the short people!

Anyway, I had a kleenex (well, ok, it was a Wendy's napkin, slightly used), and I managed to get the boots (score!) and not waste more than a tear or two. That's my problem with the song: the blatant manipulation that Scott-o-rama noted. It personifies everything that's wrong with Christmas. It's mean spirited and calculating and maudlin. And lots of other bad things!

In the spirit of love and fellowship enjoyed by so many during this holiday season, I am refraining from you-tubing that puppy.

You're welcome, and Merry Christmas to you as well.

But to give you something to um, enjoy the holiday season with, listen to what happens when some idiot says 'I dare you.'

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

It's not me, it's the bacteria!

More good news this holiday season.


I know this will make a lot of folks feel vindicated. Personally, it makes me believe we're that much closer to a Magic Weight Loss Pill. And being a sloth who likes to eat (a lot), that's very welcome news indeed.

I need answers, dammit!

Slate wants to know: which question should they answer?

I've got a gang, and no idea how to run it in a non-"little bitch gang joke" sort of way. Help!

I think we can consider the rat poison question moot now.

But what about forced masturbation?

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

More on the Best of 2006

Best Soccer Moment (Professional):
Psychotic and fierce - that's how I like my soccer players. The dance - well, it must be a Texas thing.

Best Soccer Moment (En Famille): The Notorious K T J scoring on a free kick at GPHS just as I walked up. Talk about timing. On both our parts.

Best New Adjective: Man-, as in man-purse or man-hug.

Best List of Lists: Alter Net's The Ten Best Top Ten Lists. Research, baby. I'm all about the research. The grocery lists were particularly fun. You can tell by the coke on my keyboard.

The Mack Daddy of Lists,

It's the Breck "I told one friend and she told one friend and so on and so on" award: The Lost Remote.

To continue or not to continue? That is the question.

Meh. I think I'm done.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

It's beginning to look a lot like....

The End. Of the year, anyway. All the Best Of lists coming out, etc. So, I thought I'd jump on the bandwagon and do my own little Best of 2006. And by 2006, I mean that I found it in 2006, not that it necessarily first appeared in 2006. Truthiness is important.

Best Use of a Registered Trademark in a Celebrity Dis: FedEx. Kevin, we hardly knew ye. Not that we really wanted to.

Best Internet Discovery: Youtube. Yep, Time's on to it as well, the copy cats.

Best Commercial: Cingular's Stop the Catbox.

The sheep don't like it!

Best Musical Discovery: You can guess this one - Tim Armstrong. But dude, go finish already. Two songs do not a freaking album make.

Best TV show: House. Thanks, Elvis! I never would have watched if not for you. No more endless L&O reruns!

Best Book: The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver. She is also my Best Literary Discovery. And she needs to go write a new book. Thanks, Monica!

Best Concert/Musical Event: hands down, this goes to John Prine at the Tennessee Theatre. Probably the Musical Event of my life. Unless Elvis wants to bring Nick Lowe to my living room. Thanks to my friend Anonymous Ticket Master, who discovered the presale! Your identity is safe with me.

Song of the Year, Category of Narcissism: the Transplants' DJ DJ, because it kicks ass and takes names. And look, my initials are in it, too!

And speaking of DJ DJ, let me also give Curse of the Year to this song for "fuck the motherfucking backstabbing cunts." Priceless. Couldn't get more offensive without going racial.

To be continued...

words fail

White Christmas

Add to My Profile More Videos

Cheese. Weird imitation cheese.

And where did his eyebrows go?

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Add This To The List...

of things I just don't get:

Families who go en masse to the emergency room when one member is ill/mentally disturbed/hyperventilating over the WWE Smackdown/maimed/whatever. I was hanging out there last night, when an apparent grandma and grandpa walked out with their angelic little granddaughter whose finger was all bandaged up. Immediately, they were surrounded by a clamoring horde. I counted five other adults and two young children. It was going on 9. Why didn't at least one of these adults take those young children home? Another family had Mom, Stepdad, Grandma and teenage sister acting out scenes from Dysfunctional Family Dynamics 101. Grandma telling the receptionist in a loud stage whisper 'she (the sick one) won't see her mother - she wants me.' It's like a love contest - if you love the child, you come. The longer you sit in a plastic seat being barraged by what constitutes news (Fox - need I say more?), the more you love. The more people you bring with you to share the barrage and the plastic seats, the greater that love. The more you scowl and snarl and harass the staff, the more you demonstrate that love.

It's beyond my understanding.

But I feel much better for sharing.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

On My Way To Work

I saw this on the back of a truck -

Bumper to bumper
Butt to butt
Get off my ass
You crazy nut!

No photo available.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Dempsey Watch - Day 22

Where in the world is the Dempster going to go? It's a veritable vortex of gossip, lies and innuendo at this point, in an understated soccer-in-the-USA way. A tiny horde of fans is all atwitter. America at large with no clue.

I was leaning toward Charlton, myself. Mostly because of Dempster's 'I want to make a difference' statement and the fact that he fired his agent, making the move egotistically likely and stunningly stupid. I like the sound of Charlton. Sounds like cigarettes. But the hot money is now on Fulham. Long shots West Ham and Atletico Madrid have also been bandied about with impunity.

Reason I want Demps in EPL: Fox Soccer Channel. I might get to see him once in a while. They do show a little of La Liga, I think. Or maybe I'm thinking of Serie A.

Reason Demps should go to EPL: to kick some pissy Englishter ass.

Reasons Demps should not go to EPL: It gets dark at 4. The weather is nasty and the rap is worse. He could get nicknamed McDemps. Or McDumps, depending on how those pissy Englishters take to him.

Reason Demps should go to La Liga: The climate. Gooch. Food.

Friday, December 01, 2006

T Shirt Philosophizin' Part Deux

Does that scare you? Do you feel threatened by the color contrast? Do you think this is why kindergartners must be taught to color inside the lines?

I got this shirt as part of a "deluxe" edition of Rancid's Indestrucible album, all the way from Denmark via eBay. I didn't really want the shirt, but it didn't cost any extra, so. It's not the kind of thing I normally wear (I just don't like black tees) but I washed it and added it to my weekend pile anyway. One Saturday, it won the top-of-the-heap lottery and I wore it on my weekly expedition to Walmart. And I never thought a thing about it, until I got in the check out line.

The dude in front of me freaked out. Not the throw-your-hands-up-run-screaming kind of freakout, but more the Masterpiece Theater bug-eyed double takes and leper alert cringing. I was concentrating on unloading my buggy the way I want to re-load it (heavy stuff on the bottom, bread and eggs and bananas must float to the top), but I gradually became aware that my presence was making this dude very uncomfortable. He was approximately my age, that is to say *not* somebody's grandpa (yet), but he must've been raised in *very* sheltered environment. Like a monastery. Or Van Buren, Missouri. I am the least threatening looking mom in the entire 3rd grade. Well, ok, that's not 100% true. I'm neither blonde nor bubble-headed, but I am in no way, shape or form frightening. When I have my makeup on, anyway. And I did. Have my makeup on. Anyway, to stop this meandering, dude left at a very brisk pace, heart racing, his eyes bugged out and an extra touch of gray in his hair thanks to the graphical bit of anarchy pictured above.

I couldn't figure out why until today. Pure hypothesis, of course, but perhaps, just maybe, he had a little reality check and found out that things he assumed just might not be true. Not all punks are multi-pierced multi-tatted unemployed delinquents snorting heroin on street corners and begging for change. And if that's possible, then, gee, all sorts of things could be possible: Democrats in Sevier County! Cats and dogs in trans-species fellowship! Peanut butter AND chocolate!

Well, maybe that's a little ridiculous.

But I can't wait to wear it again.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

If I Were...

Worst present ever: a children's book called If I Could Be... I still feel bad about reading it more than once to that boy who just turned 21. It was a gift from your grandmother, Sven! As penance, I'll take that principle, apply the subjunctive and play What If.


(and remember, the subjunctive presupposes things contrary to fact and exposes the limitations of my grammar knowledge)

If I were...

...a man, I'd be Lars Fredriksen. Chubby, disgruntled, with loads of cool friends. Insanely talented, not so much to look at. With fewer tattoos and a little more laundry savvy.

 Elvis Costello Album, I'd be Get Happy!!!! Soulful, yet bitter. Borrowed, yet original.

...a dog, I'd be a Scottish deerhound. Quirky. Scruffy, yet sweet. Aloof. Athletic, but deeply versed in the delights of inertia.

...a candy bar, I would not be a Zagnut. Peanut butter AND coconut? Sacrilege. I'd be a Snickers. All four food groups represented: peanuts, peanut butter, caramel AND chocolate. A solid chunk of quasi-nutrition.

...a flower, I'd be a Gerbera daisy. Singular, intense, not found in bunches.

And that's enough about me.

At least for today.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

10 Things I Hate About Me

A sonnet-free introspective tribute to a goshdarn good movie.

I hate my hair, so brown, bedraggled.
I hate my eyebrows, thin and straggled.
I hate it when I read bad books,
drawn in by their smarmy hooks
I'd hate that I procrastinate
but that one's gonna have to wait.
I hate that I love cheese so much
(and beer and pizza and chocolate Dutch)
I hate it that I stay up late,
hit the snooze, evaporate.
I hate my nose! I hate my knees!
I hate it when I must say please!
I hate being old and getting older.
The tradeoff's that I'm getting bolder.
I could hate what I was or what I am.
Mostly, I hate that part that gives a damn.

Some people will do anything to keep up their post count.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

$igns of the Season

Just in case you missed the pre-Halloween Christmas trees in your local Megalo Mart, here's a few more signs o' the times.

The Obligatory Beatle Christmas offering. Thirty-six years after the breakup, the Beatles have a "new" record out. Yes, Virginia, divorce IS expensive.

The Obligatory WTF Were They Thinking holiday record - Billy Idol's Happy Holidays. Apparently, he didn't make the cut for Dancing With The Stars. Personally, I can't wait to hear it. He looks so ... incredulous.

Christmas Peeps. The Obligatory Holiday Encroachment. There oughta be a law. These are Easter treats. Easter! I smell a conspiracy between the conquering Catholic church and the pagan marshmallow industry. We will entice them with the aroma and ensnare them in the stickiness. mwahwahaha ha!

The Obligatory Support Our Troops Christmas light display.

Enlist today! Travel to exotic lands! Meet interesting people! Kill them!

Feeling all jolly and ho!ho!ho! now?

Photographic Evidence

That I have done at least one thing right!

21 today.

Still cute as a bug in a rug.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

OK, this is disturbing

75% Donald Sutherland?

I'm blaming it on the cell phone self portrait.

Everybody knows I look like a young Lauren Bacall.

But the Joe Strummer comparison is flattering.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Even Pop Stars Get The Blues

First it was the daily challenge of lather, rinse, repeat. David, when do I stop? Then it was the homework and what was "teached" back in the day. Now there's a new dilemma for Posh and Becks: what to get Tom and Katie?

Some suggestions:

1. Anything by Mattel, because Katie's a Barbie girl, livin' in a Barbie world, life in plastic! it's fantastic!
2. His and Hers hyperbaric chambers.
3. A donation to Suri's Therapy Fund.

4. A gift certificate for exit counseling.
5. A honeymoon at the Ice Hotel, because when we see Suri, we think "artificial insemination.

Monday, November 13, 2006

{Insert Texas joke here}

What, they were all out of PBR?

Houston Dynamo defeats the Revolution on PKs. Sorry New England -the third time is not always a charm.


It was a good game, as MLS championships go.

Enthusiastic fans. In orange!

Snappy ensembles.

Clint, did your mama make you wear those?

ABC had The Bruce, Eric Wynalda and Dave O'Brien providing commentary and amusements. Say it with me, Dave. SHALrie. Not SHARlie. SHALrie. Brandi Chastain. Well, I gotta agree with Conrad - she is the most annoying injury/ailment in MLS. Big ups to ABC for showing the whole thing. The cup presentation would have been nice, and, heck, you could've stopped showing TnT's all-American smile for just one minute so we could see the build up to Ching's goal, but overall, a reasonable effort.

When will April get here?

And who will be left to play?

Will anybody (besides me and a few other certified wackos) care? Sure. The whole world will be watching. Beckham, Ronaldo and Figo are coming. Well, at least, presumably, they'll be invited. I'm not sure I'm for this move or against it (and really, does it matter?) - but it will be interesting to see what develops. Is it Once in a Lifetime all over again?

Stay tuned, sports fans. And, btw, that's a pretty good movie to watch while your waiting.

Friday, November 10, 2006


Somebody stage an intervention!

Yesterday, I had a record number of hits here. A record number of page views. And that is way, way, waaaaaaaaaaay cool.

Because, if you'll forgive me one last mohawk allusion, while this little blog is largely a grand exercise in spiky self-indulgence, it still wants to be read, to be seen.

So, thanks, y'all.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Mohawk Hall of Fame, Part One - The Icons

The backstory. What that doesn't show you are the pictures: three or four Sevier County football players and their alleged mohawks, which weren't really mohawks at all. Think more USMC or Landing Strip - which pissed. me. off. What the hell are we teaching our children these days? I made up my mind to help save the youth of America. Isn't it amazing what an idle mind and a high speed internet connection can accomplish? Anyway, here's my Mohawk Hall of Fame. Part One.

Squanto, Pilgrim saviour and Native American trendsetter. Other Indians rocked the mo', but nobody carried it off like the Big S. Dignified AND freaky.

Woody Woodpecker. He's cute, he's almost dressed, but he's no Elmer Fudd. Sure he's insane, but in a *nice* way.

Travis Bickle. This is where it gets interesting.

Listen, you fuckers, you screwheads. Here is a man who would not take it anymore. A man who stood up against the scum, the cunts, the dogs, the filth, the shit. Here is a man who stood up.

Need I say more?

Wendy O. Williams. Take that, Farrah Fawcett! Sure, she's everything that's frightening about public transportation; sure, she's the front runner in the Miss Hepatitis C competition; sure, you couldn't exactly take her home to mother - but really, isn't that the point? Inanimate objects - hell, grown men - feared her and her assault on popular culture. Probably the original GWSF. (thanks, Monica!)

The Mohawk Hall of Fame, Part Two - The Flame Throwers

Well, "flame carriers" is so 1985.

Clint Mathis. Is he a rock star? Is he a soccer playing phenomenon? Is he a psychotic freak? Turns out Cleetus is a little bit of all three. With limited consistency. You'll always have Seoul, dude. And Krispy Kreme.

Rancid, particularly the Liberty-esque Tim Armstrong.
The angles in his face! The angles in his hair! Webster's defines photogenic as suitable for being photographed especially because of visual appeal; see Tim Armstrong. Like Robert Duvall and Steve Buscemi, he ain't a handsome man. But can you take your eyes off of him? Give it a whirl and see Lars Frederiksen's colorific mo' on the Ruby Soho video here.

Spongebob Punkpants.

C'mon. I had to. He's got the do, the Docs, the spikes on his wrist AND he's family friendly. He wouldn't have to hang out at Super Weenie Hut Jr. looking this tuff.

The Red Hot Chili Peppers' Anthony Kiedis. Always at the forefront of fashion, I knew he rocked the hawk for a while, but could not locate photographic evidence - thank you, Good Buddy and John Prine Ticket Master who prefers to remain anonymous!

Mohawk Hall of Fame, Part Three - The Best of the Rest

Clichés are us. Or, um, me.

nyrb vanity fair
Originally uploaded by moodinator.

Random members of Red Bull New York doing the Taxi Driver thang for Vanity Fair, which explains the fold. At least they look good *not* winning.

Robbie Robertson.

According to my Good Buddy/JP Ticket Master, who knows absolutely every freaking thing, he's the last of the Mohicans. Or rather, the Mohawks.

Get it?

Bringing it all back home, local radio personalities Jay Adams and Steve Hartford get their freaks on for the Sevier County High School Bears.

In a magnanimous display of football solidarity heading into the playoffs, Steve, left, and Jay*, right, cut and dyed for the Purple Pride. Jay's is truly impressive. Imperial inaccessibility and twisted attention-seeking! Really, who knew he had that much hair? Steve's got the shades and he's got the color, but dude, no matter how bad you want to be a Rancid punk, don't quit your day job.

And that's all I have to say about mohawks.

I think.

If I missed anyone obvious, feel free to berate me.

*photographic representations may or may not be the genuine Jay.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Parallel Lives/Congruent Spheres*

Or, when I bought a new vehicle, so did everybody else. The exact same color!

Ever notice themes in your life? Recurring leitmotifs? Minor characters and intertwined sub-plots?

Well, I have.

First, with Elvis and all things Costello. I could make a religious experience out of it, should I be so inclined. And I am. First was the Wandering in the Wilderness - the ten year exile where I just raised my kids and re-vamped Beatles tunes for them (she scrubs you, yeah, yeah, yeah). Then the Road to Damascus/Scales Removed experience - that would be the day the cd player was installed in the Green Bean and I purchased The Very Best of Elvis Costello. You can forget how to breathe in ten years. Not long after, I bought When I Was Cruel and found a group of like-minded folks on the old Island board. And Elvis started turning up everywhere: Letterman, People magazine, the Today show. I went to shows, met fellow fans, met Elvis himself on a couple of occasions. In short, Elvis brought me lots of good things, most importantly friends and fellowship. And, with tithes and offerings, some really good tunage. As the moon circles the earth (or the sun?), so EC revolves through my life, constant and illuminating.

Lately, Tim Armstrong is exerting a strong gravitational pull. Or maybe I'm the planet (no fat jokes, thank you) and he's Haley's Comet. I don't have the science for these metaphors. Either way, he keeps popping up. First, the Fructis commercial, then, because soccer seems to be on the same trajectory, in an MLS playoff mashup for my favorite non-contenders, RBNY - and while he's not technically even playing on the song, for some twisted reason they have lifted him out of the one Lordz video he has done (a pretty good song called Outlaw) and added him to this one. See it (and others) here, but be warned that this site is effing impossible to navigate.

well, let's youtube that puppy just in case you're as cyber-inept as I am - Tim's the one in the black leather and brown fedora.

And all this is boring as hell and believe me, I'm sick of thinking about it - and these are people I find interesting! But it's like once you see the coincidence (not that there's any such thing), you can't un-see it, like the Escher print from hell.

* look, ma! I remembered something from geometry!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

I'm an Insurrectionist

and you can be one too!

Here's how:

1. Realize that your vote will never count. Not in a million kazillion years, unless you just want to vote for the winning team. And they don't care about *you*.
2. Vote anyway. Vote crazy, vote passion, vote in spite of the pointlessness. Think of it as performance art, a chance at jury duty, just don't be assimilated! The Borg will tell you resistance is futile, but remember - Picard did, and you can too.

3. And speaking of art, grab all the Crackheads for Congress signs you can and do something Christo-ish in a public place. Would this be a felony or a misdemeanor? Somebody let me know ASAP. I have ideas.

This message brought to you by Citizen United against Norms Today.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Matt Reis finds Taylor's Purse!

And the whole team celebrates!

If you weren't watching the MLS playoffs this past weekend, I have one question for you: WTF is wrong with you? There was the thrill of victory, the agony of de feet. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. The Revs won one for the Gipper, the Rapids remembered the Titans. Houston had a miracle on grass and New York...well, the Red Bulls did what they do best: playing excellent* soccer and losing to DC. Plus ça change, etc. There were good calls and bad calls, red cards and yellow cards, man hugs and man tears, mangy-looking playoff beards and attempted mohawks, insults and gestures, teenage unknowns showing up teenage phenoms, prodigal players showing some shine (I'm alliterating to YOU, Clint Mathis!), there was drama all over my tv.

Even fisticuffs!

Cheer on the Revs at DC this Sunday (11-5) 4 PM on ESPN2. Support the Dynamo against the evil Rapids, same day, 7 PM on FSC.

*excellent meaning "not sucking" in this instance.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Hark! The End of the World is Nigh...

Seriously. This is not good. This is tragic. This is indicative of everything that's wrong with the world today: The Transplants' Diamonds & Guns is being used.

To sell shampoo.

Ok, so it's been out there since '02 and I just found out about it, but that's because I have my own little superpower: a nifty ability to tune out commercials, and television in general, which comes from watching waaaaaaaaay too much tv as a child. Yes, you can sit too close to the tv. Tuesday night was that rare exception, when House went to commercial and I didn't refresh my beverage or go to the bathroom. And I heard this vaguely familiar piano riff. I'm staring at the ceiling, saying to myself 'I can name that tune in 5 notes,' and there it is on my tv. Garnier Fructis and Diamonds & Guns.

I bought this product, but not because of this commercial or any other, thank you very much Madison Avenue. It smells all candy-fruity. And what kind of name is Fructis? Not one I can associate with beautiful hair. Hairballs, maybe. I guess it's the old with-a-name-like-Smucker's caveat. But seriously, do these guys look like they'd use it? Or date girls who do? Perhaps those giant containers behind them are full of seized Fructis product and the Transplants are here to free the hair spray. Maybe they want to make some sort of point about the plight of unemployed hairdressers. Maybe they're taking stylin' a bit too far.

Maybe they did it for the money.

And I can forgive that. People gotta eat and Tim does give back. You can hear Diamonds & Guns here, but you'll have to look for it. I can't do all the work.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

It's a Conspiracy, I tells ya!

I practice safe computing. All the time. I may have a lot of email addresses, but I am faithful to two: one for people I like, and one for whenever I have to give out an email address to people or organizations that are likely to send me lots of stuff I don't want to read - what I like to call my spam dump.

Lately, everything at the dump is pushing Viagra and/or Ambien. Apparently. I never, never, never, never, never open them. They just scream "unclean!" In spite of my best efforts - or perhaps because of those efforts - I am now getting whammed and spammed by Old Navy Maternity. Do I have to spell it out? They know how old I am. They are puzzled by my (jo's) gender, but covering all bases. They assume I'll be under the spell of their not so cheap and tawdry chemicals long enough to get knocked up or knock someone up, at which point, knowing my retail preferences, I'll be shopping Old Navy.

The government's not watching you, but Sam Walton is. Be warned, America.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

He Wants to Ride His Bicycle

Austin has learned to bicycle. Not ride a bicyle, but DO a bicycle. Like these guys -

Well, not quite, but he's new to it. He came home from practice Sunday, all sweaty and eager to tell me. He insisted I watch, so out the front door I go, in my sweat pants and flannel shirt, looking like a sporty redneck. He juggles the ball a little and flicks it up, throws himself backwards, kicks the ball and collapses in a heap on the ground. With a thud. "I just have to work on my aim now!" he says.

I try not to be overprotective. I try to be reasonable. But this is looking less like a swift soccer move and more like an excellent way to break bones. I remember when his older brother learned to drown. I mean, swim. I was like 400 months pregnant with his sister and we went to the pool. Steven ran to the pool, screaming, "Watch what I can do, Mom!" as I, the leviathan, waddled slowly forth. He jumped in to the deep end and thrashed. It was like a shark attack, only without the shark. Eventually he made it to the edge of the pool, and looked up brightly. "See? I can swim!"

But, back to Austin. This is a child with an extreme sensitivity to pain. He screams when I trim his toenails. When he had his first shots, at the tender age of 6 weeks, he inhaled for a good 60 seconds before he started wailing. And once he started, he didn't stop until we were 10 miles down the interstate. He shows me every tiny bruise as if it were potentially life-threatening, details each ache and every drop of blood lost. Every tiny drop. And here he is, in front of God and the neighborhood, launching himself backwards after a soccer ball.

Kids. I just raise 'em. I don't explain 'em.

Monday, October 02, 2006

I came, I saw, I tried to make small talk

and I didn't even get a lousy T-shirt.

Yes, friends and neighbors, I made it to my high school reunion. The Apocalypse must surely be upon us, because I lived through the event. I took a peek at my senior yearbook and thought, these people don't look so dangerous. It's the burden of expectation that put me off - the old 'so, how did you turn out?' thing. Are you fat? Are you rich? Did you live up to the dreams you told us about in the yearbook? I got behind a nice protective wall of not giving a shit and went. Dare I say it had its "fun"* moments? It had its hellish moments as well.

1. Seeing old friends, most -heck, who am I kidding? ALL- of whom I lost touch with soon after high school. I'm a lousy correspondent. I blame it all on the ADD I haven't been diagnosed with.
2. ...gee, seeing old friends is all I can come up with.

1. Not recognizing ANYBODY except those old friends.
2. Small talk. I do NOT know how to make it. Especially with strangers I'm supposed to know!
3. That Back-in-high-school-everybody-clique-up vibe. Man, I thought we'd all be past that.

Twenty five years after I got over him, my high school crush deigned to speak to me. For the first time ever. It was a Crush From Afar. I asked him what he did and when he said he worked for the city, I think I can be forgiven for immediately thinking 'garbageman.' He got my vote for Most Changed. Not that I voted. And not that anybody had really changed. The sweet ones were still sweet, the not-so-sweet ones were still not so sweet. That's comforting, and depressing. Somebody told me I looked just like my mother, which is predictable and depressing. The more things change, etc. But it was good to see folks.

And I'll enjoy seeing them again in another 25 years.

*fun being a relative concept and a term applied loosely in this instance.

Friday, September 29, 2006

True Confessions, Old Punk/Soccer Mom Style

Originally uploaded by moodinator.
I am obsessed with this man. Well, more specifically, his music, but he does have a fascinating face to boot. Looks pretty good sans shirt, as well. It started so innocently. "Gangsters and Thugs" came up on a playlist made for me by Napster. Aren't they sweet? I liked it. A lot. Soon, I was listening to Haunted Cities on a daily (sometimes hourly) basis. And the buying began.

It's nice to find new obsessions. This one is a tad embarassing, considering I'm a 43 year old mother of four who drives a minivan and frequents soccer fields across the southeast. At the same time, that's what makes this one so fun. Hey, America! Not all us soccer moms are listening to Kenny G! Take note!

Tim Armstrong, I love you, but I'll be content to worship from afar. If the secret gets out, and you start getting swarmed by soccer moms, well, I imagine that would instantly 'uncool' you amongst the 18-24 year old male demographic. But who really gives a shit about them anyway? Come on up and see me sometime.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

It's That Time Again!

Banned Book Week!

I am stunned to realize I've read less than 20% of these. I promise to bring that up for next year.

Some surprises:

The What's Happening To My Body? Book for Girls is #40. What's Happening To My Body? Book for Boys is #61. Let's speculate! Girls' bodies are 20% more obscene? Boys are less likely to seek information re: growing up, presaging an adulthood inability to ask for directions? Or, perhaps boys are 20% more likely to scour the library for pictures of naked women than girls are to find same of men? Any way you look at it, gender bias is still here, in spite of all the political correctness in the world.

Where's Waldo? banned? WTF?

Carrie? I suppose that might incite prom riots and ritualistic blood lettings across the country. Could the "girlness" of the gore be the problem? Can you say Stayfree? The Dead Zone and Cujo are also fit to be banned. Congratulations, Stephen King. You're this decade's #1 banned author! At least for "adult" fiction. That anarchist Judy Blume leads the list with 5. Are You There, God? This is fricken ridiculous!

Anyway, read the list and enjoy some moral outrage! March down to your local public library and cause a scene. Not all freedom fighting is being done in I-raq.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

I'm Not Going And You Can't Make Me

At least, that was my intention.

Is there anything more freakout-inducing than an invitation to your 25th high school reunion? I mean, besides breast lumps or strange noises from the auto? If I'd just received an invitation in the mail, I could cheerfully drop it in the trash without a moment's hesitation, consideration and with no consternation. Working out my 'ations' today. I got one in the mail. And I've had no less than 3 personal entreaties to attend. Two by phone and one face to face. Make that three by phone. Face to face is hard to turn down. And I feel for her (the sweet girl who has called twice and cornered me at the county fair once). She's worked hard to pull this off. None of the other deadbeats in our class would do it, myself included. I "lost" the invitation in a masterful move of passive-aggression and miraculously found it after the deadline had passed. No worries, Sherry tells me - just see me at the picnic and pay for the events you want to go to. Argh. I went through high school behind an wall of invisibility. Why the fuck isn't it still working?

There are 2 or 3 people from that graduating class of 1981 I'd like to see again. It's the other 97 that I don't really give a damn about. I mean that in the nicest way possible. I wouldn't mind seeing them one at a time, bumping in to them at the grocery store or the fair or soccer or something. It's just hard to face all of them at once. Like getting on the damn bus again and trying to find somewhere to sit. After I talked with Sherry (again) this morning, I decided to go. I'm wavering again, but I'm pissed at myself for letting these people have this much power over me. I'm 43 years old. I should be over this shit.

I'll go.

If I can find something to wear.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Birthday Bashing With The Fun Girls

or, you can fool some of the people some of the time, but I'm on to your tricks now, sister.

My birthday was celebrated today at work. Against my will and without much enthusiasm. It was technically two weeks ago. Approximately. At my age, dates get fuzzier and fuzzier with every passing hour.

It was an end-run around the fact the Fun Girl #1 wanted to celebrate Fun Girl #2's birthday, which IS today. We used to celebrate every single person's birthday with a cake. Even if there were two birthdays on one day. And this is quite informal and we all love cake and a chance to not be working, even if it means hanging out with each other. But, 2006 brought a BAN to these festive happenings. No more birthdays were to be celebrated in the office. So, January thru August have slipped by with only one marked (Fun Girl #1 turned 186, so it was a milestone). Suddenly, today, as I'm entering my various types of payroll deductions into their various types of spreadsheets, I am told to come have cake! We are celebrating MY birthday. And all the other September birthdays! Woo hoo!!

I should feel used.

But there was cake. Chocolate cake.

I am weak.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Verbostic* Assault With Literary Intent

Well, maybe that's a tad harsh.

I opened this book at 10 P.M. on a Thursday night. Mistake #1. I had imbibed one or two stupid-making beverages. Mistake #2. I could not find my reading glasses, yet decided to forge on anyway. Mistake #3. While I realize that this is the metaphoric equivalent of poking a badger, of trying to drum up NRA memberships at a PETA rally, I'm the Patron Saint of Lost Causes. Call me Ishmael. Call me Doña Quixote. Just don't call me late for dinner.

I made it through 5 pages that night. Eventually, I made it through the whole (blessedly short) thing. It's not a bad book, in fact it must be a really good book because it won prizes. The blurbs told me so! But Stevens, the Great Butler-cum-narrator, can't contain himself linguistically. If one word will do, he'll use ten. If brevity is the soul of wit, Stevens is bound for Humor Hell. If words were air, the rest of us would suffocate because Stevens has inhaled the entire freaking galaxy. If prizes were given for going on and on and on and not really saying anything, well - you get the picture.

Anyhoo, long story short: the book left me with a larger vocabulary, a tired head and a provocative idea. What if all the words I hear and read were somehow drowning out my own? So, I'm conducting an experiment and turning off the noise. I've gone instrumental, music-wise. At least through the workday. Jazz, classical, salsa. Avoid the singing as much as possible but if it ain't in English, it's kosher. Today's been Buena Vista Social Club derived - all the branches on that tree that Napster has to offer. Yesterday, it was Mozart. Tomorrow? Maybe Japanese pop! I'm still bangin' my head to the Transplants in the car and I'm still overdosing on fiction at home, so no cold turkey. I wouldn't unleash that on my family. It is refreshing to have background noise, not that it's noise, but it's not demanding too much of my tiny little brain and I can just enjoy.

Imagine that!

*Yeah, I made it up. Sue me.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Talkin' T-Shirt Philosophizin' Blues


I've owned this shirt for at least two years now, a souvenir from FANTASTIC Nick Lowe show at the Belcourt. I could only love it better if it had NL inside it. We've gone casual on Fridays at work (waaaay casual), so I wear it maybe twice a month. No one ever commented on or noticed it until...just the other day. One of my many many bosses read it. Out loud. To me. She smiled. Later, a fellow soccer mom read it. Out loud. To me and a few others. They smiled, nodded and agreed that it was an excellent point. A slightly drunk (or borderline sunstroke case - it's hard to tell the diff, sometimes) read 'what's so funny 'bout WHAT'? I had to finish reading it for him. A casually tossed peace sign was my reward.

My conclusion? I should've cornered the market on these and maybe, just maybe, a tide has turned.

*cue voice of Boris Karloff*

Maybe world peace, I think, doesn't come from a store. Maybe world peace... perhaps... means a little bit more!

Give peace a chance, peeps.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Five Things I Can't Live Without (Today)

1. Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm. Technically, Avon's Lip Dew is better, but I don't want to get involved with another Avon Lady.

2. "I Want It All" on my cellphone. Best. Ring. Tone. Ever. At least for me. The sound could be better - not enough bass, and it's tinny if it's too loud. Of course, it's never too loud.

3. Barbara Kingsolver's books. Started The Bean Trees today, after ripping through Poisonwood, Pigs In Heaven and Prodigal Summer. Pigs is the sequel to Bean Trees. Wish I'd known that before I read it! I haven't inhaled books like this since the Vonnegut binge c. 1983. But there needs to be more!

4. Socks. It be getting chilly in the evenings!

5. My nifty, stylish and comfortably over-sized Columbus Crew rain jacket. I'm trying hard not to feel any RBNY guilt when I wear it. My heart's still with you guys! You just have NO merchandise! None!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Out of My Comfort Zone

and into the fiery pits of the hair-chewing, white knuckled hell of nervous insecurity.

Ok, so maybe it's not all that bad. It's just a little dinner party. I've done them before. In 1984 or so. Will they like what I cook? Will my dog bite somebody? Do I have any of those little towels for the bathroom?? Is my bathroom clean and relatively non-aromatic? Where did I put the Oust? Can I get new carpet installed today? Caterers - do I know any? Tranquilizers - do I have any? Can I get to the liquor store on Saturday? What if they've turned tee-totaller on me? Are these hives on my arms or just a shitload of little bitty bug bites? What would Paris do?

I don't see how washing my car in heels and a g-string would help, but at this point I'm willing to try anything.


update: I survived. No one got food poisoning. No one hurried home early. I think it was a success.

Friday, August 04, 2006

So, I've been to Ohio.

It's flat.

There's lots of water towers.

The swimming was good.

So was the ironing.

Putt-putting wasn't too shabby, either.

The soccer was most excellent.

My Little Cupcake scored his first goal (that wasn't a pk) in the first 9 minutes - like he was waiting for me to show up. Eds, next year I'll try to be there earlier in the season!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Find The Fact!

A new game. Guess which of these statements is true.

1. Landon Donovan, underachiever extraordinaire, singlehandedly sent Team USA packing yesterday!

2. FIFA referees are the world's best!

3. Bruce Arena is the devil!

4. English soccer is creative and exciting to watch!

5. MIXX 105.5 plays MY favorites from the 70's, 80's and 90's!

OK, so "none of the above" is not an option. It's 98 degrees with 300% humidity. My underwear keeps bunching up and my team went home waaaaay too early. Color me cranky. And sarcastic.

But this helps make it better.

Big ups to Dempsey, who scored our only goal! Hope to see you playing in Europe, but not for those pissy Englishters:). Big ups to Gooch, who may be going to play for those pissy Englishters, for learning quickly what a referee will tolerate. It's not your fault that people fall down when they run into you. Thanks to Italy and Ghana for showing us where we need to post those "No Diving Allowed!" signs.

2010 is just around the corner. But for now, ANYBODY but Germany, Italy, Ghana or England!

Thursday, May 18, 2006

The Discovery Goes On

I found my birth certificate. I’ve been looking for it quite a while, ever since my mother handed it over at least one baby ago. I spent two days battling the 400 square foot debris field that was once a laundry room and there it was – in with the old school policy pamphlets, day care agreements and assorted warranties. What was I thinking, putting it in with what were important papers that have evolved in the natural order of stuff into trash. I’m nuts like that sometimes.

Anyway, I now know the hour of my birth. 10:51 PM. Eastern. So, after years of guessing what my rising sign is, I can finally find out definitively. And for some reason, this is vitally important to me. I just can’t keep on being a schoolmarmish Virgo the rest of my days! That’s just soooo not me.

(cue annoying giggle)

So, there it is in black and white – I have a Gemini rising. I knew it. I’ve always been a little schizo. I mean, not as in a tiny and multi-personalitied Sybil, but as in more than one contrasting personality trait. Little or tiny are not words any one would use to describe me, unless perhaps they were describing the limits of my patience or my liquor threshold.

Cherry-picking a few of the more “that’s me!” statements:

Restless in the extreme, you are easily bored because of your short attention span.
You have a great need to be yourself and to explore your latent talents and abilities.
You … will be known for the degree of intensity with which you dislike normal everyday routines and chores.
At times, you prefer to be alone rather than deal with any imperfections in yourself or in those with whom you might relate.
Ideas and philosophies must have some sort of immediately realizable, utilitarian function in order for you to pay attention to them.

Try it yourself!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

The Mother Lode

For Mother's Day, being the kindhearted and caring soul that I am, I'm going to share. I'm going to share some of the knowledge I've gained in 20 years of mothering. I'm going to share the things nobody ever told me, the lessons I've learned the all-too-hard way. Whether you want to know or not.

1. Floam will eventually grow hair if it is played with at the dinner table.

2. Hamsters like dog food. A lot. And you won't know how much until the hamster is no more.

3. The average time it takes a toddler to get a sucker stuck in his hair is 1.5 minutes. Thirteen seconds if you are in a moving vehicle.

4. Teenage boys will know it's time to bring the soccer practice stuff home for washing when they can smell it (in the trunk) from the front seat. The socks will ALWAYS be inside out AND wet and said teenager will disappear before you can make him pull them right side out.

5. If you start feeling complacent and giddy because your kids are playing so quietly and nicely together or alone, find out what they are doing. At once. Something expensive or irreplaceable is about to be broken.

6. There are no sweeter words than an unprompted 'you're the best mom in the world!' from a sticky 6 year old when you give him back his hair-free sucker. And none more cutting than the same when you won't buy a cell phone for him six years later.

7. Some kids bite. Hard. Never turn your back on a biter.

8. Any food can be finger food with the proper amount of wipies.

9. Character traits that are annoying in children are valued in adults. Asking why 40,000 times no doubt led to the invention of the encyclopedia. And the mental institution.

10. It all washes off. Eventually.

Happy Mother's Day!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

You Asked For It!

Back by popular demand: Elvis Versus the World. Well, maybe not by popular demand. And demand may be too strong a word. Whatever.


Elvis, in every album, every song and gosh darn it, almost every note, displays his emotional dictionary, from love and adoration through paranoid jealousy down to revenge and guilt.

Rod Stewart, in every album, every song and almost every note, displays his emotional repetoire: sad horny and happy horny, with nuances of wistful horny sometimes tossed in.

EC has been performing classics from the great American songbook since he was in short pants.

RS has been performing them since Divorce #47. Or was it Baby #62?

Delusions of Celteur: EC pretends to be Irish, RS is a wannabe Scot.

EC and RS both look iconically good in a suit. Worst fashion disaster: for EC, it has to be jeans. He looks like that kid at school, the you're-ugly-and-your-mother-dresses-you-funny kid; for RS, it was the 80's. In fact, I'm convinced he's used all his American songbook profits to buy up the photos, because I have scoured the internet and they just ain't out there anymore. But you know the ones I mean: the spandex, the boas, the pictures that just make you think of the stomach-pumping rumor all over again.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Travels with Dad

Experts say that married people should keep surprising each other to keep things fresh in the relationship. I don't think they had this in mind.

We went to Nashville to see my husband's parents. It's about a 4 hour trip, but the time changes. Normally, on such trips, I pack a few snacks and drinks to keep the Krusty Krew (our four children) from accosting strangers at rest stops. This trip was sudden, unplanned and therefore, unsnacked. But it wasn't really a problem. No one complained. We took a pit stop at the friendly I-40 rest area. I took the girls into the bathroom, Jim went with the boys. The boys browsed the brochures and I gathered them all up and headed back to the car to find my husband standing there with one pack of peanut butter toasty crackers in his hand.

"What's that for?" I ask.

"I figured the kids would get hungry," he answered.

One pack of crackers. Four children. Do the math. Don't forget to factor in a wily dog and sibling rivalry to the power of ten.

O, triumphant hunter! If we don't get more crackers, we're gonna start eating our own. Survival of the One Most Beloved By The Parental Units, after all. And these are nobody's favorite crackers, but the law of supply and demand is unequivocally confirmed.

I did the only sensible thing.

I ate them.


Wednesday, March 29, 2006

This Weeks Hot List

From the Anti-Paris

  1. A bed to oneself. The Anti-insomnia.

  2. Eating out. The Anti-cooking.

  3. Hellcat samplers at stroke-inducing volume. The Anti-Pop.

  4. MLS – Dynaquakes and MetroReds season openers 4/2. The Anti-Sport.

  5. Mardy bums. The Anti-Ken.